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House begins inquest into subsidy claims, summons Finance Minister

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The House of Representatives has called on Hajia Zainab Ahmed, Minister of Finance, Budget, and National Planning, to appear before it with all papers pertaining to subsidy claims from 2013 to date.

Rep. Ibrahim Aliyu, Chairman, Special ad how committee gave the directive on Tuesday, when Stephen Okon, Director of Home Finance in the ministry, came before the committee in Abuja

The minister was given till August 16 by the chairman of the committee to appear in person with all necessary supporting documentation for subsidy claims.

The chairman stated that the minister must respond with the total amount released as subsidy payments from 2013 to the present day.

He stated that it was necessary to submit the breakdown of the enterprises that were recipients of subsidy payments from the consolidated revenue account.

The minister’s recent claim that the nation would need N6.7 trillion to service subsidies was worrying, according to the chairman.

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He added that the subsidy would be borrowed so that Nigerians may benefit from it and that it was essential that the minister appears before the committee to explain certain acts.

He continued by saying that the matter required everyone’s attention because it was so important and that the committee was acting in the public’s best interest.

Okon, however, claimed that he was required to show up because the ministry did not want to present the committee with information that had not been properly processed.

He said that he had come to ask for an extension of time and added that he had not been ordered to present anything to the committee.

He claimed that the ministry would be happy to request more time in order to gather the data needed by the committee.

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